Pall-Ex is calling on the logistics industry to create more career opportunities for women and support their professional development in an industry still heavily dominated by men.

Speaking on International Women’s Day (8 March) group chief executive Kevin Buchanan said he thought the sector’s leaders could do better.

Pall-Ex International Womens Day 2024

Pall-Ex International Womens Day 2024

“At Pall-Ex Group, we recognise that having a diverse workforce is at the heart of our success,” he said.

“Our employees benefit from flexible working hours, with 10% of our female staff working part-time hours, allowing them to balance a career with family responsibilities. We also have a thorough induction programme to support employees returning from parental leave, as well as a fair and inclusive pay scheme.”

Buchanan acknowledged his own company could still do more, with 16% of its workforce women, reflecting the industry average.

“We want our workforce to be even more diverse and inclusive,” he said.

“With that in mind, we’re launching our LEAP Future development programmes that allow the local community to train in logistics roles. This will enable us to grow our own talent from the community across HGV, FLT, transport office, sales and leadership roles, while providing valuable job opportunities to local people, including those from typically under-represented groups.”

Pall-Ex added that improving the situation had to start at a young age, when female students may not even consider logistics as a career option.

Samantha Moiroux-White, Pall-Ex’s corporate customer service manager, said that before joining the industry she had preconceived ideas about it: “I imagined an industry that was drawn to the past, dingy and cold transport offices, and for most of the decisions to be made by men who have worked in logistics for over 20 years,” she explained.

However, she added that the sector was a place where ideas and innovation were encouraged: “It’s important for women within the industry to share their real experiences, challenge preconceptions, and spread the word about the benefits and opportunities available.”

Lauren Pullin, head of commercial analytics at Pall-Ex, said women needed to know opportunities in logistics existed for them.

She said: “Young women in particular need to know it’s a viable career. I certainly didn’t think I would be in logistics at 16 but through career fairs and collaboration with schools, colleges, and universities, maybe we can open the door for everybody.”